SmartMove is a product provided by TransUnion Rental Screening Solutions (TURSS) that provides background checks, credit reports, criminal history and rental history to landlords and real estate agents. TURSS is owned by TransUnion, the major credit reporting agency that provides the information in the SmartMove reports.
Sometimes the information reported on the SmartMove report is incorrect. For example, the report may contain criminal history or eviction information that does not belong to you or is not complete and up to date. If negative information is falsely reported about you, it could keep you from getting a place to live.
Some property management software companies and others that help landlords with property listings offer tenant screening as a service. These tenant screening services sometimes use larger consumer reporting agencies like TransUnion for the credit reports and rental history. The following are examples of property management services/software that have offered tenant screening and credit reports using TransUnion:
If a landlord or property management group denies your rental application because of negative information in your tenant report, they are required under the FCRA to inform you of the denial and reason why. They must also provide you with the name and contact information of the reporting agency that supplied the rental application screening. If TransUnion Rental Screening Solution ran a tenant report on you, the inquiry may appear on your credit report as “TURSS” or “TRSSI.”
You have the right to view a copy of your file and dispute any inaccuracies that are reported. If you were denied housing after SmartMove by TransUnion Rental Screening Solutions provided an inaccurate report, you may be entitled to damages.
The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) was put in place to protect the accuracy and privacy of your information that the credit or consumer reporting agencies use. These reports include history on a consumer’s credit and loans, employment, housing, and criminal background.
The FCRA entitles you to the following tenants rights:
Reporting agencies like TransUnion and SmartMove are required to use the highest maximum standard of accuracy when providing consumer reports. They are expected to regularly update their databases with the latest information on consumer histories.
Additionally, the FCRA limits what negative information can be included in a tenant screening report. A report cannot list civil suits, judgments, arrest records, paid tax liens, collection accounts after 7 years, or bankruptcies after 10 years.
Just like a credit report, you are entitled to a free copy of your TransUnion SmartMove file. Once you receive this report, review it to verify that all of the information is accurate and up-to-date. If there are errors, you have the right to dispute the incorrect information and have it removed from your report.
You can send a dispute through the mail in a written letter, over the phone or through email. Keep a copy of the letter you send and record when you sent it, or keep a record of your phone or email communication with TransUnion. TransUnion SmartMove will then look into the alleged error to fix the inaccurate information and remove it from your report.
If your dispute is ignored or the error is not corrected within 30 days, you have the right to sue.
If you were denied from renting an apartment or house, or if the financial obligations under the lease changed, because of inaccuracies in your tenant screening report, you may be able to sue TransUnion SmartMove in a federal court.
Common issues with SmartMove / TURSS are inaccurate reporting of evictions and criminal history. Many reports contain information that belongs to someone else with a similar name.
Perez v. TURRS – EDPA. Ms. Perez was denied an apartment and lost her application fee, as a result of an inaccurate background report created by TURRS. TURRS mixed Ms. Perez with another individual with a similar name, and inaccurately represented to the apartment complex that she was a convicted felon. The case settled.
Elizabeth Garcia v. TURSS – Plaintiff applied to rent a townhouse. The townhouse rental manager obtained a tenant screening report through TURSS. TURSS provided a report about Plaintiff which was inaccurate, listing that Plaintiff had multiple evictions. These evictions did not belong to Plaintiff but belonged to another person. As a result Plaintiff was delayed in moving into the townhouse. The case settled.
Brett Mabrie v. TURSS – E.D.PA. Mr. Mabrie was denied a home rental due to an inaccurate eviction record reporting on his background report by TURSS. The eviction had been dismissed but reported as though it was open. The case settled.
Michael Cruz v. TURSS – E.D.PA. Mr. Cruz was delayed in getting a rental home due to an inaccurate rental history reporting on his TURSS report. The rental history showed an eviction that belonged to a person with the same first and last name as Mr. Cruz. The case settled.
Keith Williams v. TURSS – E.D.PA. Mr. Williams was denied an apartment because of inaccurate information on his TURSS consumer report. The inaccurate information was a criminal history and an eviction that belonged to another individual who had the same name as Mr. Williams. The case settled.
If you are dealing with similar issues, you may have a case against TURSS
If your FCRA rights have been violated by TURSS find out now if you have a case. Fill out the free case review form on this page or call us at 1-877-735-8600. At Francis Mailman Soumilas, P.C. our consumer protection lawyers have your back and know how to fight for you in federal court against large credit reporting agencies like TransUnion.
The consultation is free and if you do have a case, there is no out-of-pocket cost to you. We only get paid when we win.